It's no surprise that life as many of us have known it has taken a dramatic change. Since its arrival COVID-19 has altered the lives of many making virtual living the new normal. The Savannah State Baseball team is no different taking blows due to COVID-19 resulting in altering the team’s normal routine. I had the pleasure of interviewing with Coach Carlton Hardy. Coach Hardy is Savannah State’s very own baseball coach, and he has served as head coach of the team since being hired in 2006. Hardy has led the team to 14 successful seasons, making him the first head coach with the most wins at the University.
Coach Carlton Hardy has his way of showing that even though we are still under quarantine that we still move forward. Coach Hardy said, “Yes, the plan is to have a successful and safe season. The very first game I believe is February 7, 2021.” Hardy was also asked about safety precautions that the team is taking.
“We have been practicing, conditioning and encouraging our team constantly to be safe and to practice safe social distancing for the well-being of the team,” Hardy continues, “We have guidelines wearing masks at all practices and games, now instead of using one dug-out the team is now broken into sections for the players to alternate the use of the dug-out,” said Coach Hardy who is invested in in the safety of himself and his team.
In addition to the safety measures Coach Hardy states, “There are hand sanitizing stations placed throughout locker room, and practice areas, in addition to constantly having temperature checks for the safety of the team.” Coach Hardy emphasized “ I would have to say the biggest change for the team is the fact that social distancing calls for the team to be more spread out and it is harder for some of the teammate’s to perform while wearing masks.” Coach Hardy was asked if there was not going to be a season if conditionings were being held for students interested in joining the baseball team.
“Conditionings are being held for practice held five days per week. If there are people interested in joining, I would advise them to go to the Athletic Department and request a try out form,” said Coach Hardy. In closing coach Clayton replies, “A special thank you for the opportunity to be chosen for an interview and we support Tigers Roar in everything they do for the community.”
Enrico Peele, Baseball player for Savannah State University, give his insight of the biggest changes he had to adjust to during COVID-19. Peele answered, “The biggest change I had to adjust to is social distancing, we can’t hang out in our locker room anymore for too long and wearing the masks causes trouble breathing during practice and workouts.” Peele the main goal for the team this season in which he replied, “The main goal for us as a team is to win the conference, I believe our team is in for a very special season.”
Conducting these interviews gave more insight into the team and its players. Peele concluded about his team, “For me, the best part of being a Savannah State tiger and be apart of the baseball team is the bond that is created. The teammates become brothers that make everlasting memories while playing the game we love.”